Groundhogs Climbing Trees?

Published 12:00 am Sunday, September 29, 2013

He’s normally a loving and gentle dog, but our next-door neighbor, Diamond, doesn’t cotton to wandering cats and squirrels. He chases them, baying wildly, until they slip through the fence. Last week, the hound came out in him again. He treed a groundhog. “He was barking like a maniac,” owner Gard Erlandsson told me that evening. She investigated, expecting to find a raccoon up the tree. It didn’t look like a raccoon. It looked like a … Gard is a Swedish native and didn’t learn about groundhogs until coming to America. She summoned help from the neighborhood naturalist and big game hunter, Rick Evans. He assured her that groundhogs don’t climb trees. Then he had a look for himself. “He was hanging from his armpits, scared to death,” Gard said. She put the dog in the garage and left the ground hog in peace — up the tree. She watched periodically for an hour. Sometime after that, the groundhog fell, slid or climbed down. As it turns out, groundhogs are not necessarily grounded when they are in peril from dogs or other attacks. Then they find a climbing gear and can scamper up a tree out of harm’s way. No doubt the groundhog won’t be making his home at the neighbors’ house as long as the dog is on patrol. He will probably dig under the fence to live with me.
Farmington’s Bad Word In The Grass
There is no War Among the Neighbors in my native Farmington. That carefully sculpted bad word in the grass in 30-foot tall letters with an arrow pointing to a certain house was carved … by the homeowner. About himself. Glider pilots over Farmington had noticed the shocking word that refers to a certain bodily orifice as they circled about the countryside. Bert Bahnson had sent us photos. The property is next to the old Farmington School where I got my …